Thursday, April 14, 2011

Playing Doctor, Psychiatrist, and Physical Therapist

I'm anemic! I win the diagnosis!

I've never been anemic before, but I had a feeling that I was what with the enormous fatigue I've had the past couple months. My thyroid number is also triple what it was a year and a half ago -- still in the normal range according to the clinic I go to, but not according to other sources.

I've decided this all has to do with Lamictal. The fatigue coincides with when I went up to 75 mg on it.

I like Lamictal a lot. I'm still cycling, but my lows aren't as low as they were before, and I get higher than I have in a while. The highs are also sustained. Once in a while, the highs get a little hairy, but most of the time it's a bonus.

Lamictal benefited me at lower doses, and it hasn't stabilized me more at these higher doses (I'm at 150 mg now), so I can probably drop to 75 or 50 mg. I'm still on a very low dose of Effexor, and the love for sleep I experienced at higher doses of Effexor isn't the same as this fatigue I have now. So maybe we can mix the Lamictal and Effexor to get a sleepiness that doesn't also feel like I'm hollowing out. And I can stick with that until I'm less stressed and can drop the Effexor again.

I'm not weak, though, which is awesome. I'm up to THREE PULL-UPS!!!!!!! I will be buffer than Linda Hamilton!

A pic from one of my blog entries on Wellsphere is the fourth hit for "Linda Hamilton chin-ups" on Google Image...creepy/obsessive. Catfish's arm is up there too.

In hip news, I've decided the hip pain I have -- and my mom has, and her mom has -- is due to some kind of...congenitally...misarranged...body element... In other words, no injury or malady, but a certain arrangement or weakness or tightness that our bodies have and that we end up exacerbating, compensating for, favoring, working around, etc. You know how you go to a physical therapist and they observe your body and can tell if a muscle group is weaker than the others by the way you stand? Or that your ribs are slightly off? That's what I'm talking about.

So I've decided I need to strengthen the muscles in my hips and lower abdomen to make sure I've got a good framework there. That hip is also less flexible than the other one, so I'm going to make sure I work on its range of movement. It may never get more flexible or less painful (and the pain is NOTHING compared to vulvodynia!), but I'm hoping that if I pay attention to it, I can limit the progression of the issue with age.

The pain is near the inguinal ligament, which is apparently a common site for sports injury. I remember "injuring" my "hip flexor" on that side in track in high school while training for hurdles -- just a "strain," but now I'm thinking that maybe I've had this problem for longer than I thought. Maybe it wasn't an injury but a natural lack of mobility that I was pushing up against. Or it could've been an injury to that ligament, even though it didn't seem like a huge deal at the time.

But for my grandma and my mom and me to have the same pain?!

I am feeling better in the head -- I think it's mostly just taking the time to care of myself. As I said in my last blog post, I can't expect meds to do everything. They can help, but they will never fix everything. I am sensitive to stress, and I have to look out for myself and choose a lifestyle that works for me. Thankfully, the kind of stress I'm sensitive to is the sustained, non-momentary, non-emergency I should hold it down just fine when the terminator arrives.

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